Claiming a game in any genre the best certainly takes some balls, and subsequently the trouble received after may not be worth the risk. But here I go, diving into the world of certainties, and declaring Call of Duty 4 the best first-person shooter in history. I have good reasons, I swear; I was tenth prestige, twenty-five days unjustifiably and unhealthily invested in the multiplayer, and I had the time of my life. Sometimes I do miss it. The endless nights of gaming with the same guys absolutely destroying everyone in our path, drinking mountains of coffee and red bull to play that one extra game. I was addicted, and no other game has given me that same thrill. One exception may be World of Warcraft, but I haven't played long enough to really thoroughly enjoy my experience.
In the simplest of terms, Call of Duty 4 had the perfect multiplayer format for a first-person shooter game. The energetic chaos of urban warfare and redefining the term "run-and-gun" mashed into a fun and explosive package made Infinity Ward famous, and made the series the behemoth seller it is today. Some would argue that formula is getting stale, and there are projections the next game in the series will be the tipping point of its popularity. Other franchises like Battlefield and Homefront are slowly eating away at the ever persistent fan base, and will eventually swallow it whole.
The biggest complaint heard about CoD4's multiplayer was the overpowered M16. New players definitely felt overwhelmed - I didn't get into the game until six months after it was released, and it was painful to continuously respawn after getting demolished by the burst-only weapon. Also some maps weren't the best designed, but understandably every map in a multiplayer game isn't the greatest. Those were my only objections, except the rampant no scoping eradicated in Black Ops.
I haven't played a Call of Duty for more than a month since the original Modern Warfare, but that is only because subsequent iterations played much differently. Not to say they are bad games (Modern Warfare 2 has now been fixed), however.
Maybe I'll have the balls to declare my favourite in another genre sometime later on. Just Call of Duty 4 did so many things right that current first-person shooters are tragically missing. Check later today for more blog posts. Ciao!